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  #31  
Old 02-19-2008, 07:10 PM
Unimog Bob Unimog Bob is offline
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When it comes right down to it it doesn't matter what one says or wants to see happen, it is actions that tell the story. If you're not riding and ripping it up in the swim area to show off for the tourists and hot chicks no one is going to call you out. If spring break rolls around and someone is throwing it down twenty feet from shore and a kid gets whacked with a board or granny gets wrapped up it won't matter at all how much anyone says they are all about safety.

I sure don't want to limit the fun or kill the stoke. Lets just follow some reasonable guidelines. I'd propose something along the lines of: When kiting in the gulf and there are other non kiting beach goers present all riding other than launching and landing should take place at least two kite line lengths (150') from the waters edge. inside the 150' mark a rider should be moving perpendicular to the shore in a controlled manner.

Even near sighted hot chicks can see you 150' out. That way when you miss that handle pass you can just worry about the beating the kite is going to give you, not the one your going to take from your bros when you screw our access.

Bob
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  #32  
Old 02-19-2008, 07:24 PM
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toby wilson toby wilson is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oldschool View Post
So I am at my usual spot at Siesta and I see this small blue RRD at the smallest (least wide) part of the north end of the beach crashing next to the water, in the water, next to walkers (most crowded weekend - we had hundreds of beach walking tourists)

Anyway, I haul my old wrinkly ass up there and here are these two kooks, look to be in their 40s, both seem schnockered and one is wearing a hillbilly straw-hat (no shit)

Apparently the one dude who owns the new hyper type has been letting people fly his LF 3m trainer and then take control of the 8 or 9m RRD - I tell him he should pack it in - he and his buddy get in my face and since I am an OG (and apparently not very threatening looking) they tell me where to shove my comments

I swear if I had a knife I would have poked his freaking kite

Anyway, I gotta run to the club, gonna get doped up and huge and then kick some ass next time

OS/SRQ/an OG who at least tried
OS, I think I know who you are talking about. Is this him???
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  #33  
Old 02-19-2008, 08:18 PM
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Steve-O Steve-O is offline
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Ok, so this thread has moved towards issues along the beach. I love riding the beaches, especially in the spring. Tons of fun.

In a nutshell we need to unite as one and be a voice. An organization needs to be formed to make important decisions and be a liason between public officials. The more proactive we are now, the better off we will be. As a sport, we have issues that must be dealt with. For example, we are working with Honeymoon State Park to insure they know of our intentions and have laid out guidelines in advance that we as riders intend to follow. The guidelines will help the lifeguards educate new riders and empower them to deal with offenders that don't follow the guidelines. It is alot easier for a lifeguard to approach a kiter in question and say "these guidelines were developed by kiters for the safety of everyone". The park officials appreciate that we are taking the first step. It goes along way in building a relationship.

Furthermore, we are working to open up access again at Howard Park. It may be a certification only location, but so be it, it is better than having no access at all. We will see how that all goes, it will take time.


Finally, to get back to this original thread, I spoke with the kiter today on the phone. We had an excellent conversation and he feels a bit overwhelmed about all that goes into this sport. I offered him to sit in on my safety class at the shop. I believe he and his friend are going to attend. I apologized for being harsh, but I clearly wanted to express that we are serious about safety and we will do whatever it takes to protect our access. We all make mistakes as newbies, and that is understood, but certain actions are not acceptable. He clearly realized that passing a kite, in high winds at a crowded spot, to someone that has never flown a large kite, is now a bad idea. He learned from that mistake. Luckily, nothing bad happened, but we all know luck runs out. I hope by working with him in the safety class, that he will be able to make wiser decisions in the future and keep himself and his friend out of harms way.

I know this is long, but Chris Kenny has been in the shop all this week, and he is getting is kite fixed, and plans to be on the water in maybe 1-2 months. Full recovery. Congrats Chris and looking forward to sharing that first day back on the water with ya.

IM OUT!!!!
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  #34  
Old 02-19-2008, 10:32 PM
Tom Stock
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Take your org, develop rules for the beaches, get agreement from the city beaches and ask them to be enforced on an individual basis. If a Jet Skier is busting through the swim areas you can bet he's going to get fined. Same should happen to kiters who are the subject of complaints about riding in the swim zone. Launching and landing excluded of course.
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  #35  
Old 02-19-2008, 10:48 PM
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bryanleighty bryanleighty is offline
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fyi on the initial topic of discussion..
I have had a pm conversation with the owner of the kite from my post and he understands completely what he did and knows it was a very poor decision.

definitely something that we are all guilty of at one time or at many, many times.. I fall somewhere in the middle of that group.

And he let me know that he would have rather been talked to on the the beach than called out on a forum post and I agree 100% that I should have put my kite down and talked to him. That is completely my fault for not following up in that manner..and I will try to do the proper thing next time.

We can all learn a little something every day cant we?

-b
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  #36  
Old 02-20-2008, 01:09 AM
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toby wilson toby wilson is offline
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Please correct me if I am wrong Steve, but wasn't setting up this system what the organization kite-4-life is supposed to be?

I know Stevil Kenevil Sadler has been working very hard behind the scenes to set up both a regulatory system for our area as well as a non-profit organization targeting getting children (of the appropriate age of course) involved in kiting as well as other sports. I believe he was also targeting some other groups and trying to help them as well with kite-4-life and has been doing so for quite a while now. I also know he is looking for volunteers to help get this thing going and has most of the pieces in place along with some very good contacts/relationships already made. Give him a ring, his celly is 813-389-3683. I am more than willing to help but I do recall all of his efforts and ideas being shot down in the past after we had 'safety meetings', debated on the forum about it, etc. Lets put our money where our mouths are and either shut up or put up and join the cause so we can agree on a set of rules/regulations, put this forum drama to rest and go ride!!!
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  #37  
Old 02-20-2008, 05:20 AM
Skyway Scott
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Well, I personally have contacted the people that I was going to call out, if it proved necessary. I have talked with a few of them over time and thought we had an agreement about maintaining a safe riding distance at the beaches. We did have an agreement. But, I now realize that without numbers in the agreement, it's possible that the term "riding safely from shore" can actually mean quite different things to different people. Some riders believe that staying 20 feet away from a bather is okay, others think we need to stay out of the marked areas entirely, and some have views in the middle. These different views appear to exist everywhere, not just here.

For now in terms of safely riding the beaches, it's basically like we have agreed in theory to a speed limit, but with no actual number tied to the limit. We just all set our own limit. It's basically pointless as a community standard. Does PASA or IKO have any recommendations in this regard (nearness to shore)?
Can we all agree to a distance from shore? Something not hinging on seeing someone? Maybe the podcast with Rick, Neil and others will give us some guidelines.

Assuming the above goes nowhere (which I hope is not the case), one thing that the local kiting community can do and is doing, regardless of agreement and participation among all, is to actively communicate with local authorities about our concerns and our intentions. This has proven very effective at Ft. DeSoto and seems like it is working out well for others, especially in the Park system where one "head guy/gal" is ultimately responsible for the park and has authority within its borders. It sounds like guys up North are making really good progress with the rangers up there. Nice.

It's my impression that most of the work at Ft. DeSoto was done a few years back by people like Jayson, Eagle and myself. Now all anyone has to do is just be polite and ask for Jim, is my take. Even when a permit is needed, I wouldn't be surprised if it's easy from info I got several years ago. With that in mind and the fact the sign got green-lighted, it'd be nice to see that sign get wrapped up. I am pretty surprised this cherry didn't get picked already. It's a photo op for you guys in to that. It's waiting.

I pretty much agree with Steve(s). I think efforts toward being pro-active with authorities as opposed to letting authorities become reactive is a good idea. I have always felt this way and acted on it with Ft.DeSoto when I felt it was necessary. It was anything but a popular move at the time, but it worked out fine.
I am going to focus my efforts down this path and leave any attempts at self-policing vets to others.
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  #38  
Old 02-20-2008, 07:24 AM
Tom Stock
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As far as I know it is illegal to be riding in the swim zones, period. Just because it's not currently being enforced does not mean it's 'ok', regardless of whatever distances we set for ourselves regarding swimmers and shore.

Those buoys are there for a reason.
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  #39  
Old 02-20-2008, 08:28 AM
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Is there really a LAW against riding in the swim zones Tom? Being serious, not sarcastic here. I just have never heard of any LAWS in conjunction with kiteboarding but do not claim to be a lawyer or really knowledgable in the legality of this stuff. Interesting though for sure.
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  #40  
Old 02-20-2008, 08:55 AM
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Check this out regarding swim zones.

One day at the Dunedin Causeway, southside of course, some of us were riding just off the sand. We were in the swim zone area. It was cold, no one was in the water. A cop drove up, and politely asked us to ride outside of the swimzones. We asked why no one had approached us before about this, and he wasn't sure, but again he didn't want us in the swimzones. He later came back and pulled up an ordinance on his computer. It was something to the effect of no powered watercraft inside the swimzones....it listed kayaks, windsurfers, jetskis, boats, ect. He explained that a raft was not considered powered, but anything with a powersource was considered a powered watercraft. Fine was $80+dollars. He was cool and asked us to spread the word and use the area just west of where we were.

The irony here was we could use the north side of the causeway no problemo....well that is where the powerlines are. Nuf said.

So I do not know if that ordinance stands for all swimzones, and like most it is up to the law enforcement to do just that enforce. It took years for someone to say something to us. Note here that on days the water is full of swimmers, riding was done outside the swimzones.
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